Keay, S.J. and Terrenato, N. (eds.)
Italy and the West: Comparative Issues in Romanization,
Oxford, UK, Oxbow Books Limited, 233pp.
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Nineteen papers examining varied responses to Romanization, and how this affects our view of the development of the Roman Empire.
The traditional view of the Romanization is as the triumph of a superior and more advanced culture over primitive communities that was brought about by military expansion and which resulted in the creation of a very uniform political and cultural entity. It is only in the last twenty years that the variety of responses that Romanization elicited among the various ethnic groups, social classes, genders, spheres and even within the same person in different conjunctures of his or her life have begun to be appreciated. This new perspective has deep implications for our perception of Roman imperialism. The aim of this collection of papers is to further understanding of Romanization at a formative stage; early Roman expansion in Italy. There is much evidence for bi-directional negotiation between Italian communities and Rome. Understanding the motivation of the Italian peoples to become part of a new political entity is crucial to knowing how Roman Italy was kept together for more than half a millennium. Seven papers also examine responses to Romanization in other areas of the empire.
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